Nohemi Gonzalez, a student from California, died during the Paris terror attacks in November, and now her family blames social media. On Tuesday, they sued Twitter, Facebook, and Google in federal court for allegedly facilitating ISIS online, according to a Reuters report.
“For years, defendants have knowingly permitted the terrorist group ISIS to use their social networks as a tool for spreading extremist propaganda, raising funds and attracting new recruits,” the lawsuit stated.
The attorneys argued that ISIS’ growth in recent years was made possible by their online presence on these platforms. The companies allegedly snubbed requests from the U.S. government to do anything about it.
Spokespeople from Google and Facebook told Reuters their companies work hard to keep terrorists off their platforms.
“There is no place for terrorists or content that promotes or supports terrorism on Facebook, and we work aggressively to remove such content as soon as we become aware of it,” a Facebook spokesperson wrote in an email. They said the company worked with law enforcement if evidence of a threat pops up.
A similar lawsuit filed in January said Twitter allowed ISIS to operate about 70,000 accounts. Back then, a Twitter spokesperson told LawNewz.com there was “no place for terrorism on Twitter,” and the company was working with authorities to eliminate ISIS’ presence on the platform.
On November 13, ISIS agents killed 130 and wounded hundreds more in Paris, France.
Update — June 17, 8:22 a.m. EST: In a statement to LawNewz.com, a Facebook spokesperson reiterated the company’s opposition to terrorism.
We extend our deepest sympathy to those affected by terror attacks. There is no place for terrorists or content that promotes or supports terrorism on Facebook, and we work aggressively to remove such content as soon as we become aware of it. Anyone can report terrorist accounts or content to us, and our global team responds to these reports quickly around the clock. If we see evidence of a threat of imminent harm or a terror attack, we reach out to law enforcement. This lawsuit is without merit and we will defend ourselves.
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